Fakegifts.com duo plead guilty to selling fake gifts
Kiss goodbye to cheap cyberchic
The US dotcom duo allegedly behind e-tailer fakegifts.com have pleaded guilty to selling counterfeit goods.
Mark Dipadova and Teresa Gayle Ford were arrested in January after their site ruffled designers' feathers by offering cheap imitations of products such as Cartier watches or Gucci handbags.
They were charged with three counts of trademark infringement, one count of conspiracy, and one of making false statements to federal agents.
In addition, several manufacturers went for the jugular - Cartier and Montblanc managed to get a $15 million judgement against Dipodova. Meanwhile, Rolex and the Movado Watch Co have reportedly won $1 million and $250,000 judgements, ComputerUser.com reports.
Despite the fakegifts site blatantly stating it was not shifting genuine goods, but fake items (like the sellers on street corners and markets in the non-virtual world do every day), Assistant US Attorney Dean A Eichelberger deemed it was not enough to dodge prosecution.
He also said that the two had hidden their cheap chic inside other bulkier products, such as "tap lights", to dodge customs.
"This case demonstrates that persons bent on defrauding legitimate businesses of their good names cannot hide behind the anonymity provided by the Internet," said US Attorney Scott N Schools. "They can and will be brought to justice".
The site was out of action today. Dipadova and Ford face up to five years in prison. ®
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